Keeping the Family Business Afloat

On one hand, it seems like running a family business would be easy. All the key people are on the same page and they all share the same goals except when they don’t. Running a family business is anything but easy when what’s good for the business is different from what’s good for the family. Talk About … Read more

DOMA Decision Has Tax & Benefit Implications

Same-sex married couples and their employers are assessing the impact of the U.S. Supreme Court decision holding Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional. Now that same-sex marriages are recognized for purposes of federal law, many things change. Income taxes. Same-sex married couples may file a joint federal income-tax return or file separate … Read more

Time’s Almost Up On These Tax Breaks

Will you be needing new equipment (or other fixed assets) for your business in the near future? From a tax standpoint, it would be wise to decide soon. Bye-Bye Bonus Depreciation If you postpone your purchases until next year, you’ll miss out on a bonus first-year depreciation deduction of 50% of the adjusted basis (or … Read more

Q&A – Company Credit Ratings

I recently discussed payment terms with a new vendor and was told my company’s credit rating was good. I didn’t know my company had a credit rating. What is it? A company’s credit rating is based on its “trade” credit track record. Trade credit is the credit extended by vendors and suppliers when they give … Read more

Q&A – Will Medicare Cover the Cost of Nursing Home Care?

I’m having an argument with my brother about whether Medicare will cover the cost of nursing home care for our mother. He says it will, I say it won’t. Who’s right? It depends. It’s not that easy to qualify for coverage. Generally, if someone with Medicare has been hospitalized for at least three days for … Read more

Living on Your Retirement Savings

You’ve worked and saved, and now you’re ready to retire. Do you have a plan for managing your money during retirement? If you simply withdraw money from your savings or investment portfolio whenever you need it, you might spend more than you can afford in your early retirement years and shortchange your later years. Worst … Read more

Catch Up Contributions

Did you know that you can contribute more to your individual retirement account (IRA) once you turn 50? Many employer plans also allow extra “catch-up” contributions. Annual IRA contributions generally may not exceed $6,000 (the 2016 inflation-adjusted limit) or your taxable compensation income, if less. But the $6,000 limit increases by $1,000 in the year … Read more

Q&A – Withdraw account earnings after five-years

I know I have to leave money in my Roth individual retirement account (IRA) for at least five years before I can withdraw account earnings tax free for a first-time home purchase. I have two Roth IRAs at two different financial institutions. How does the five-year clock work in a situation like mine? You start … Read more

Keep an Eye on Expense Accounts

Harvey was passed up for a promotion he felt he deserved and he was angry. So he decided to give himself a raise — by padding his expense reports. Unfortunately, Harvey’s actions are not uncommon. According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners,* expense reimbursement was the third most frequent fraud scheme in the U.S. … Read more

Q&A – What is the difference between a tax deduction and a tax credit?

What is the difference between a tax deduction and a tax credit? A tax deduction reduces the amount of your income that is subject to tax. For example, if you earn $80,000, deducting $10,000 of expenses would leave you with $70,000 of taxable income. A tax credit is a dollar-for-dollar reduction in tax liability. So, if … Read more